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Op-eds

    • GeoffEditorial

    Israel: Can the enemy of my enemy really be my friend?

    Dec 07, 2017 1 Comment
    The current diplomatic flurry about Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visiting numerous African countries all over the continent to strengthen or create ties, has many positive angles, but also rattles skeletons in the closet, particularly for South African Jews.
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    • AboveBoardShaunZagnoev

    Board’s Parliamentary Liaison an indispensable link

    Nov 30, 2017 Go comment!
    The position of Parliamentary Liaison is a relatively new one within the SAJBD. It was introduced with a view both to keeping ourselves abreast of major political developments affecting the country, and to be the interface between our community and other sectors of our diverse, multicultural society.
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    • Sifrin Geoff HOME
    • Sifrin Geoff HOME

    Criticism of Israel: Whose right is it, anyway?

    Nov 30, 2017 2 Comments
    It is not unusual for elder South African politicians to use their anti-apartheid struggle credentials as political capital, as if their views are superior to others.
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    • Howard Feldman 2018

    Zapiro draws criticism

    Nov 30, 2017 3 Comments
    It was my fault. Because not only did I invite cartoonist Zapiro into the studio for an interview but because I asked him about his Israel views. I also invited listener comments and questions.
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    • Flags SA Israel

    Downgrading the SA embassy is akin to a boycott

    Nov 23, 2017 Go comment!
    After decades of oppression, resistance and stalled attempts to break the apartheid status quo (justifiably defined as a crime against humanity), South Africans finally negotiated an inclusive and constitutional state.
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    • BenitaLevin

    The makings of a meaningful simcha...

    Nov 23, 2017 Go comment!
    A few months before we made aliya, I received a phone call from one of the fabulous organisers at our school in Johannesburg. Effervescent and full of joy as always, Cheryl’s smiley voice rang through the receiver: “Benita-la, I just want to confirm the date for Lirani’s barmitzvah.”
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    • AboveBoardShaunZagnoev

    Embassy downgrade pointless and self-defeating

    Nov 23, 2017 Go comment!
    In recent years, we have seen regular attempts by BDS sympathisers within the ruling party to push for South Africa to break its ties with Israel. The most recent initiative was the adoption for further discussion of a proposal, introduced at the ANC’s policy conference in July, that the SA embassy in Tel Aviv be downgraded.
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    • GeoffEditorial

    The visit ‘home’: Do SA émigrés ever wish they’d stayed?

    Nov 23, 2017 Go comment!
    Anyone who has attended a 40-year high school reunion, knows the uncomfortable feeling when you meet classmates from several decades ago, who immigrated to other countries and have had vastly different lives. After five minutes of warm greetings: “Wow, it’s so nice to see you again! Do you remember when we played Sunday league soccer together?”, an uncomfortable silence falls over the gathering, amidst awkward attempts to joke about the passing of time and how everyone is getting older.
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    • Sifrin Geoff HOME
    • Sifrin Geoff HOME

    How to paint the town in #MeToo colours

    Nov 16, 2017 Go comment!
    The growing worldwide momentum of the #MeToo movement through which women who were sexually harassed are speaking out after remaining silent for many years, echoes two erstwhile women’s movements of equal passion: the Suffragettes in the late-19th and early-20th centuries demanding women’s right to vote in public elections; and the 1950s feminists campaigning for equal pay for doing comparable jobs as men, and similar issues.
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    • howard feldman

    Shabbat lunch in the north-eastern suburbs

    Nov 16, 2017 Go comment!
    We were sitting at a Shabbat lunch when the hostess raised a very serious issue. She wasn’t feeling absolutely comfortable with herself and needed the affirmation of her guests.
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    • MichaelSieff

    Time to say goodbye

    Nov 16, 2017 1 Comment
    Most regular readers of this column will be surprised to know that this is my last one, as I have decided to leave the Chev to pursue other opportunities. As King Solomon, the wisest man ever to have lived, famously said: “To everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven…”
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    • WIZO

    The Duke of Edinburgh International Award

    Nov 16, 2017 Go comment!
    At the beginning of November, the Israeli Youth Award Ceremony was hosted by the British Ambassador to Israel. This distinguished international award programme has been in place since 1956, and began as the “Duke of Edinburgh International Award”.
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    • AboveBoardShaunZagnoev

    Paying tribute to some illustrious Jews and non-Jews

    Nov 16, 2017 Go comment!
    From the very outset and to this day, the leadership of the SAJBD has included some of South Africa’s most eminent lawyers, among them many judges. Their skills and knowledge have time and again proved invaluable in confronting the many legal challenges facing the community over the decades, whether relating to immigration and citizenship, resolving intra-communal disputes, combating anti-Semitism, safeguarding Jewish religious rights, or sundry other areas.
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    • SAZFColumnNetzerPic

    Netzer Machaneh Kol HaNeshama – ‘All of the soul’

    Nov 16, 2017 Go comment!
    Netzer South Africa is the Jewish youth movement, affiliated with the South African Union for Progressive Judaism (SAUPJ) and the South African Zionist Federation (SAZF). We are a dynamic, entirely youth-led and youth-organised body, which works with the youth to provide the unique Netzer community a space of fun, learning and growth.
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    • AlhadeffDrugsinthirdreich2

    Third Reich abused drugs to help them fight the war

    Nov 09, 2017 Go comment!
    “I demand that you do not sleep for at least three days and nights if that is required,” General Heinz Guderian is reported to have told the thousands of German troops who had massed to cross the River Meuse and push into Belgium and France.
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    • BenitaLevin

    Learning to trust…

    Nov 09, 2017 Go comment!
    One of my favourite life-coaching life lessons is learning to “trust the process”. For me, it means letting go of one’s fears and “limiting beliefs” and having faith that things are going to work out the way they are supposed to, in the end.
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    • JTAOpEdLarryDavid copy

    Larry David's Holocaust joke was an offence  against comedy

    Nov 09, 2017 Go comment!
    In a famous episode of "Seinfeld", Jerry is upset that his dentist, a recent convert to Judaism, is already telling Jewish jokes. He complains to the dentist's former priest.
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    • Sifrin Geoff HOME
    • Sifrin Geoff HOME

    Censorship: A double-edged sword

    Nov 09, 2017 Go comment!
    The clumsy attempt by the State Security Agency and SA Revenue Service to block distribution of the book by investigative journalist Jacques Pauw, The President's Keepers, is nowhere near the censorship which prevailed during apartheid. But it eerily reminds us of how the slippery slope begins in that direction.
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    • David Schwartz1

    Habonim Machaneh - a summer like no other

    Nov 09, 2017 Go comment!
    There is perhaps no better way to encapsulate the Habonim Machaneh experience than with the popular song our campers sing every December - “Habonim Machaneh makes my life so beautiful!”. That’s because what each and every channich/ah (student camper) experiences and gets out of our incredible three-week machaneh, is truly unique and life changing.
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    • AboveBoardShaunZagnoev

    A week to commemorate Suzman and Bizos

    Nov 09, 2017 Go comment!
    ​Over the weekend, representatives of the SAJBD attended an event where the renowned human rights lawyer George Bizos was honoured by the Hellenic Federation of South Africa.
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